So I've dabbled in running for the past year and a half or so, and finally decided that I really needed to just start signing up for races to keep the pressure on to train. I've got a 1/2 marathon scheduled for April 10th and another June 6th, and I'm finally to the point where I'm starting to feel like a runner rather than a guy trying to get through a run. I went out for 9 miles this morning, my longest run to date. Parts of it sucked b/c it was just above freezing and many sidewalks are not shoveled. Parts of it were a ton of fun. Last Tuesday night was the first time I used YakTracks. For the right conditions, I really recommend them. I didn't slip once, which can be a feat this time of year in Michigan. yaktracks are great. i used them last year. what i did figure out through some friends that run XC is they use XC cleats if the snow and slush. even if you just put blank cleats in the screw heads still contacts the ground giving good ice traction. the best part is that XC cleats usually go on sale super cheap (i got my old asics dirt dog 2 for $18 online from runningwarehouse). i also use them as softball cleats and light hiking shoe alternatives in the summer too.